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06.01.2005 General News

Man Dies In Police Custody

By Daily Guide
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The Greater Accra Regional Police Administration is grappling with circumstances that led to the death of a detainee, Atsu S. Agbenyagah at the Accra Railway Police Station.

Atsu 32, died at the Railway police cell in very questionable circumstances, but the officer in charge of the station, ASP Nkansah, refused to comment on the incident.

“I will not talk to you: after all I am not obliged to talk to you”, he said when enquiries about how the deceased died in custody.

The death of Atsu in police custody has come in the wake of similar incident in Tamale where the CPP Northern Regional Chairman Alhaji Issa Mobilla died in military custody.

Regional Police Commander ACP Kofi Boakye however could not stomach the lackadaisical attitude of the Railway Police and therefore ordered a through investigation into the death of Atsu Agbenyagah.

The Regional Crime Officer has been charged to unravel the cause of death of the deceased.

Atsu, a container master at Kantamanto Market was detained last week Monday over a cell phone problem, following a complaint lodged by one Osei Kwame, shoes dealer.

Osei Kwame who is now on the run was said to have given his Sony Erricson phone to Atsu to sell for him at ¢600,000.

However when neither the money nor the phone was forthcoming, he reported the matter to the Railway Police.

According to relatives, Atsu might have been beaten to death because of uncomplimentary comments made by the investigator that the deceased would be taught a bitter lesson.

On the night of Atsu's death, the family said the Railway Police swiftly released five other inmates on remand.

One of the detainees informed friends of the deceased that Atsu had been beaten to death.

According to the detainee, Atsu was handcuffed whenever beatings were administered on him.

His legs were also tied with net sponge. But the police explained the suspect died as a result of knocking his head against the cell wall.

This theory has been challenged by the father of the deceased Mr. Togbe Mensah because when he heard that his son had been arrested and he came down from his Nkawkaw base to bail his son, the police said he could not because the court has remanded him.

The police would also not allow him to see his son.

Insisting that he wants to see his son, he went to the police the following day and was told that his son has been taken ill and has been sent to the Police Hospital for treatment.

Not satisfied with the explanation, Mr. Mensah followed up to the police hospital only to be led to the morgue where the remains of Atsu were kept.

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